The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) today published the entries for the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Cup (Gr3PA) to be run at Haydock Park racecourse on Saturday September 4. The race, which was previously known as the ARO Cup International Stakes had been run at both Newbury and Royal Windsor racecourses. The mile event with a prize fund of £14,000 will take place on Haydock’s most important fixture of their Flat racing calendar, Betfair Sprint Cup Day.
The eleven entries are headed by recent Group 2PA winner, Bayan Athbah, who looked a potentially smart mare when winning the Royal Cavalry of Oman International Stakes over six furlongs at Newbury earlier this month. It was her first attempt in Group company and she readily won by two and a half lengths in a very fast time. Stepping back up in trip she may reoppose the majority of the horses who finished behind her, as Toofan, Al Kaaser, Abiyah Athbah, Mazyoonah and Jadaayil have all been entered. Also in the possible line-up is Alajab, a French import who won on his UK debut, Khateer and Alghanny who are seeking to do the same since arriving from France and Alameen, who will be making his first start for new connections.
Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival, said: “We are excited to be bringing Arabian racing to Haydock Park on such an important day in their racing calendar and delighted to support the Arabian Racing Organisation through the sponsorship of this race.
“We thank His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidential Affairs and Her Highness Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, Supreme President of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and Head of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood for all their support and guidance throughout the Festival’s activities this year.”
The HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Cup is held as part of the global HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival programme of races, of which this is the sixth and final event in the UK this year, ARO having already hosted five Wathba Stallions Cup series events which aim to promote the breeders of Arabian racehorses. The Festival has played a significant role in the promotion of Arabian racing and breeding around the world since it began in 2009, aiming to continue the efforts made by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to preserve heritage sports and equestrianism in particular, promoting Arabian horses and UAE heritage around the world. Sponsoring hundreds of races since its’ inception, the Festival supports a wide variety of contests from the grassroots to the highest level. These events culminate in the worlds’ richest Arabian horse race on Turf, the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown, a Group 1 PA run in Abu Dhabi in December.
Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “ARO is extremely thankful for the continued support of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival. It is great to have a new and prestigious sponsor for this race and we are also grateful for the support and assistance of the British Horseracing Authority and the team at Haydock Park who will be hosting Arabian racing for the first time.”